MacPro with Black Screen

Mac Technical Support
Okay, so I've searched the forums, but I'm probably not using the right terms. I've got a relatively old MacPro tower that seems to match/exceed the Recommended hardware specs. I'm at work now and can upload the needed detailed specs later.

Most pertinent info is that I'm running 10.5.8, Quad-Core Intel, 5GB RAM, with the original ATI Radeon X1900 XT 512MB card.(Never had any glitchy issues with it)

So what's happening is that I'll start the client, log in and start any type of game single or multi and after a few minutes of play (not at any consistent point) the screen will go black but I'll still here all of the sound and as far as I can tell I can still click around. After a minute or two, I loose even that and need to hard shutdown the system. If I restart immediately, it get to the grey apple screen and sits, never booting up. But if I let it sit a minute or two, it'll restart with no problem.

First time I was able to get through the first campaign mission, got to the restart level screen, and went black. REBOOT Played again for Raynor's 5 kills, got the 5 kills and the achievement icon popped up, then went Black. REBOOT, decided to continue to the second cinematic, got to the Bar Interior menu, clicked on Kerrigan's picture, and went black. SHUT IT OFF AND WENT TO BED ANGRY...

SO that being said, have I missed an existing thread? If this a firmware issue? Do I need a new video card?
Here are my specs:

Hardware Overview:
Model Name: Mac Pro
Model Identifier: MacPro1,1
Processor Name: Dual-Core Intel Xeon
Processor Speed: 2.66 GHz
Number Of Processors: 2
Total Number Of Cores: 4
L2 Cache (per processor): 4 MB
Memory: 5 GB
Bus Speed: 1.33 GHz

ATI Radeon X1900 XT:
Chipset Model: ATY,RadeonX1900
EFI Driver Version: 01.00.202

I have no idea what most of this means. Hopefully an answer is in here somewhere.
I think this may be a known issue.

I think if you try to resize the window or switch between fullscreen and windowed mode, it might resolve this. (command + m)

SC2 Mac Known Issues sticky post
I tried that a few times last night with no success. I've also tried starting and running the game in both windowed and full screen with no difference. It seems like this is a more extreme version of the comments I keep reading about the mission playing fine and end slowing to a crawl immediately afterwards.
Greetings, Samohtep,

With what you're telling me, it's possible that your video card may be having issues. I would recommend running the Apple Hardware Test. You will need to have the original disc your computer was shipped with in the drive. Hold down "D" while you're booting.

I'd recommend an extended test of all hardware, looping if that's possible. That will let us know for sure if there are any hardware problems. If it reports any hardware issues, you'll want to contact a local Apple Service Provider to address those.

If it comes back clean, run TechTool Deluxe, if you got an AppleCare Protection Plan with your system.
Hello everyone,
I'm having the same basic problem as Samohtep, only my screen goes black within about 1 minute of running the game, so no "playing" as yet. I just ran TechTool Deluxe 3.1.3 and everything passes with flying colors.

I sent an e-mail into Blizzard support last Thursday, but other than the automated reply about problems with Key Codes, I've had no response. Also tried the phone line, but surprise... it was full, "please call back later".

Anyone have any other ideas?
Having the same problem...nearly identical rig. If I stay in a menu or briefing movie area for too long (more than about a minute and a half) or play the game too long (~7 minutes) my monitors shut off and I have to hard restart. I'm assuming this is my video card overheating and shutting down; I can hear it working pretty hard whenever SCII is open. Card itself seems to pass all tests fine.

One thing that does help; Ive noticed my x1900 tends to collect dust really quickly. If I clean it out I can squeeze more active time out of it, but SCII still overheats the thing within minutes-essentially unplayable. I work with some pretty intense graphics stuff, and even though its an old card I've never seen anything do that to it. Need to update the card anyway for other reasons, so I'm probably looking at waiting for the 5870.

Kind of pissed. Bothers me that I keep hearing all the graphics problems blamed on 10.6.4 bugs when I'm running 10.5.8 (some of my work software doesn't like the new OS updates...). Can't keep the damn thing running, regardless of quality settings.

For now I'm just working on stuff all the time while the collector's edition box taunts me from the corner of my desk

MacPro 1,1 Dual Core Intel Xeon 3GHz
OSX 10.5.8
ATI Radeon x1900 XT (EFI Driver: 01.00.202)
Dear Lucytr and fellow SC2 players,

I can verify this behavior on the exact hardware. I will decline your recommendation of a hardware test as the system itself is fine, and powerful enough to play this game. WoW works without a problem. And so does everything else I do with my mac (parallels, vmware, other games, xcode development, etc.) The problem, my dear Lucytr, lies with the SC2 client. Best I can tell there is a mismatch in the openGL implementation of the SC2 client and whatever Apple is shipping. I am running 10.6.4, fyi.

Thanks, Sasha
After much rummaging for original install discs, I've run the Hardware Test, and furthermore repaired permissions and verified disk with Disk Utility. Everything came back clean. I've also run several loops with Rember to check my memory, that came out fine too.

I've tried a clean install on my Boot Camp drive, with freshly upgraded ATI drivers. While this bought me a graphics boost in Vista. I didn't even make it to the next campaign mission before the screen blacked out on me.

I'm "glad" to see that there are others with the same problem.
i am having the same exact problem.

Mac Pro
2 x 3Ghz Dual-Core Intel Xeon
OS 10.6.4
4 GB Ram
ATI Radeon X1900 XT

I don't want to rule that my problems are over but I played around for a bit last night super cleaning my machine. I let Rember run through a few more loops then shut my machine off for a while. Came back after a few hours and installed the 1.0.1 patch and...

things seem to be working much better. I only got about 45 minutes to play after all that, but there were no black screen shut downs. I'm not ruling out that it will still happen but let me give it some more extensive "testing" :)

For those who haven't already, go buy a can of compressed air from Radioshack and shoot it in both sides of your video card. While it is something I used to do on a regular basis, it seems that my apartment is a much dustier place than my former house. I found an almost immediate drop in temperature and noise.
Screen going black is usually a sign that the GPU (video card) is overheating. Getting rid of any dust on the GPU (or VRAM chips on the card) may help (while you're at it, use a can of compressed air and blow the dust out of any other nooks and crannies in your machine), but if it's an older system it's very likely that running the game is pushing the card beyond the limits of what it can do at this stage in its lifespan. The higher the resolution and the more features that a game uses (and greater detail you have in your settings), the more processing that the GPU has to do, which results in it generating more heat.

You could look at the possibility of an after-market GPU cooler (if one's available), but if the card is damaged then a heat sink/fan won't help. You may want to keep an eye out for good deals on the ATI Radeon HD 4870 for the Mac, a few people are clearing them out and the card is known to work in older as well as late model Mac Pro's (it has both 32-bit and 64-bit EFI, I've seen posts on other forums from users with 2006 & 2007 machines who are using the card without any problem).
So I cleaned my card and have all of my video settings set to low, and I am able to play a mission before it crashes. My screen goes black after two videos play. Cleaning the card seemed to help, but it still crashes on me. Any more suggestions?
So after nearly a full day of play, I'm pleased to report that I seem to have no more problems. I'm getting much better graphics on the PC side, but faster load times on the Mac side.

Also, after running the memory test ( and cleaning the system, the whole machine has been running 5-10 degrees cooler. Even after some heavy rendering work that I had to do on Sunday morning.
I think overheating/cleaning is at least part of my problem too. Thanks Samohtep!

I had forgotten we had some remodeling done, and I had not yet taken time to clean the inside of my machine. Wow, when I opened it up I expected to see some dust bunnies, but what was there was more like DARTH BUNNIE :0

After a thorough cleaning, I'm up and running (everything on the lowest settings) for at least a while.

Since I plan on hanging on to this 2006 vintage MacPro 1,1 for a while (pass down to my kids for school, simpler games, ect.) I had already looked into what upgrades are still available for this old of a machine, and like Trilo mentioned, the Radeon HD 4870 appears to work (even though it is not Officially Listed). I thought about waiting for the 5870, but since the 4870 seems to be a stretch, I ordered to 4870 upgrade kit (Apple online $349 + tax) last saturday night. with 2 day (business days) shipping it should be here tomorrow.

I'll let you all know how well it works! ? :) Thank you everyone your ideas.

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